My friend John is one of the Lost Boys of Sudan. He fled his village at the tender age of 7 and has been separated from his remaining family for over 20 years. He is now a US citizen, but every day he wakes up and Sudan is on his mind. His father is a Sudanese pastor who refuses to leave his congregation, and as a consequence, goes into hiding when the conflict swallows his village. Every time I see John, he gives me the latest news from the Sudan. I can not fathom how he deals with the daily not knowing the ending to his family and his country’s story.
“So on that day Achish gave him Ziklag, and it has belonged to the kings of Judah ever since. David lived in Philistine territory a year and four months.” 1 Samuel 27:6-7.
John’s life provides a glimpse of what it must have been like for David. I read through these Bible stories and easily forget that the people involved didn’t have the advantage of knowing the ending. David woke up every morning with a longing for home and an uncertainty about his circumstances.
“But David said to Abishai, ‘Don’t destroy him! Who can lay a hand on the Lord’s anointed and be guiltless?…But the Lord forbid that I should lay a hand on the Lord’s anointed.'” 1 Samuel 26:9…11.
When given the opportunity to end to his misery by taking Saul’s life, David refuses. His companion, Abishai must have thought him mad to pass up such a golden moment.
Paul, like David remained faithful in the face of great opposition. There was no guarantee that he would see God triumph in the regular opposition he faced. Both men refused to see their lives through the lens of ordinary human understanding and emotion. They held tight to the faith that God held not only their lives, but the very course of history in His hands.
Lord, like my friend John, allow me to see the future with the eyes of David and Paul. We long for the peace and safety that can only be found in you. May we, by the power of the Holy Spirit look to you and know that you are our only hope. Keep us from dwelling on the forces that threaten to overwhelm, but train our eyes on you and your saving grace. Amen